05/20/09 9:44 PM ET
Stults to return to LA rotation on Monday
Lefty to be followed by Milton for series at Coors Field
By Ken Gurnick / MLB.com
Stults said he still expects to make that start, even though on Wednesday his thumb and wrist were immobilized in a brace.
"It was the doctor's idea to brace it because it might heal faster by not using it at all," said Stults, who suffered the injury making a defensive play in his start last Friday night in Florida.
"I think it will be on only a day or two. I figure to throw a bullpen session Friday and start Monday. I had a short bullpen yesterday and it didn't feel any worse after that."
Manager Joe Torre also said he intends to stick with a 13-man pitching staff for the time being, even though he'd prefer to have 12 with an extra position player.
"Something always crops up, like Stults," he said of the left-hander's sprained pitching thumb. "We're going to take another look at Milton and, hopefully, in two to three weeks, get [Hiroki] Kuroda back. Then we'll have to make a decision."
Kuroda, who won Opening Day and hasn't been seen since, will begin a Minor League rehab assignment Friday night for Class A Inland Empire at Bakersfield. He's likely to need two or three starts and could return to the rotation at the beginning of June.
Torre said having a four-man bench does become a problem if he needs to hit for a pitcher in the middle innings of a game that he needs to hold back his main pinch-hitters for the late innings.
"Last night, I would have used [Randy] Wolf to be my first guy [pinch-hitting]," he said. "I really only had X-Man [Xavier Paul] and Mark Loretta with all their left-handers in the bullpen, and I wanted to have one or the other available late in the game to play catch-up."
Ken Gurnick is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.